Without a doubt, July is my favorite month of the year.

I love the long days, the blue skies and the hot weather. I love going for walks on warm summer evenings, sitting around a bonfire or relaxing on the hammock. This past July, we watched fireflies, hiked through a canyon, spotted several rainbows, visited a field of sunflowers and relaxed in a butterfly garden. Could any month be more perfect?

But hidden beneath that beautiful exterior, July had more than its share of stress and anxiety. We were five months into trying to navigate a global pandemic. We made difficult choices about school, and then a week later the school district changed its plan. We quarantined and took our first COVID test.

I tried to capture both the highs and lows, as I processed life in my July art journal.

The theme of my July art journaling box from “Let’s Make Art” was “Momentary Wonder.” However, I adjusted my theme to focus more on love and kindness. I ended up titling it “heARTwork,” which I think was perfect!

The kit introduced me to two amazing products, Dylusions Shimmer Spray and Stickles Glitter Gel. It’s hard to see in the photos, but this journal is full of shimmery, shiny, sparkly pages. I think it was a great way to wrap up a glittery month.

I started out trying to create every page with just the colors of bright pink and blue, which came in the kit. However, toward the end of the month, I just HAD to have more colors of the shimmer spray. I ended up ordering a pack of 11 colors, and I have zero regrets!

On this page, I wrote a note with advice to my younger self. The note is folded up, using special instructions that came in my July kit.

I did lots of doodling in this month’s journal…

And I filled my pages with thoughts and quotes about love and kindness…

On this page, it was therapeutic to write down some of the worries that have been troubling my broken heart…

I included a quote from Viktor Frankl on the left. I read his book, “Man’s Search for Meaning” earlier this year, and it was incredibly challenging during this crazy year.

On the “Bottled Up” page, the top layer of the bottle flips us to reveal some of my favorite July memories.

This was a fun page that was based on one of the tutorials from Let’s Make Art. I love the idea of focusing on the wonder of the world.

I love galaxy paintings. This one turned out a little messy, but it was inspired by the comet Neowise, which was visible in July.

More doodles…

And I ended with a reminder from the rainbows I got to see in July.

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